Tag Archives: adventure

Gabe Rogel vs Alaska’s Brown Bears

Aniakchak National Monument, AK
While quickly un-holstering his .45 revolver, Dan quietly yells, “Oh shit! The bear is on a kill! Turn around! Turn around!!!” So, we do, and start moving as fast as possible with our 80 pound backpacks, ripping our boots off and starting to wade completely helplessly, like sitting ducks, through knee deep mud. We’re making our way aways from a large brown bear who was on some sort of kill… possibly another bear,maybe  a moose… we couldn’t tell, as the carcass was mostly gone. Over the next day or so, Dan tells us a horrific story, proving bear’s heightened aggression while they are eating.
Chris Solomon, Aniakchak National Monument, AK
Let's Tarentino this a bit and go back. Back to how and why I ended up in this bizarre, terrifying situation. A couple of years ago, I get a random email from this writer in Seattle who says his name is Chris Solomon, and he’s planning some hiking trip to Alaska, possibly to feature in Outside Magazine. Hmmmm… hiking. I’m not normally a huge fan unless there’s a much larger climbing or skiing objective involved (I know, I’m a snob). But wait, I think he said something about packrafting, this oddball “sport” I’ve been hearing more and more about. This piques my interest, due to the exploration possibilities it opens up to remote, wild and varied terrain. Alaska… always incredible. Outside Magazine… cool. Okaayyy, I’m listening.
Dan Oberlatz, Aniakchak National Monument, AK
I call. We talk. And Chris goes on to explain we would hike through Aniakchak National Monument, the least-visited of all the U.S.’s park lands. After a couple of bush plane flights from Anchorage, we’d find ourselves half way out the Aleutian Peninsula, hoist our massive packs over our shoulders and walk/packraft from the Bering Sea to the Gulf of Alaska… and, oh yeah, we’d go up and over a wild volcano somewhere in the middle. This area also boasts the most dense brown bear populations in the world, a fact that both heightens my interest in seeing these magnificent beasts and keeps me up at night.
Adventures in Aniakchak, AK
Chris also explains we’ll be in the field with one of Alaska’s best adventure guides, Dan Oberlatz, who has owned and operated Alaska Alpine Adventures the past 15 years. The three of us will make this overland, 200 mile journey through some of the most rugged, wild and out-of-this world terrain our planet has to offer. After learning more, I respond with a smattering of four letter words, solidifying not only my excitement for the adventure, but my commitment.
Hiking in Aniakchak, AK
Working as an adventure sport / outdoor lifestyle, commercial photographer the previous 12 or so years, I’ve found it extremely important to balance the well-paying, sometimes posh advertising work with projects that take me right down to my roots: sweating through wild, raw adventure. After all, having experiences such as the once Chris has sold me on, are the entire reason (along with the creativity involved with photography) I studied this profession and worked my ass off to make it my livelihood.
Hiking Adventures in Aniakchak, AK
Again, in Tarentino fashion, lets fast-forward to the location along this journey where I stated, “I will remember this place on my deathbed.” As we stood along the bottom of the vast, 6 mile-wide Aniakchak crater and took in the surrounding landscape; snowy peaks that shoot up to the volcano rim, 500’ high cinder cones along the crater floor, a huge, milky, turquoise lake, fed by a mineral-rich, yellow-orange-red stream, lined with bright green bushes, abundant brown bear tracks and best of all, not another human for a hundred miles. And those humans, are few and far between. We had spent 3 long days hiking up and into the crater and were about to spend 3 days pack rafting down to the Gulf of Alaska, where we would then walk 5 very long days along the coast to the nearest fishing village. We were out there. Way out there, and in a landscape only a human body can describe to itself.
Aniakchak National Monument, AK
Adventures in Aniakchak, AK  See more of Gabe's images here!

Sunny Stroeer – Grand Staircase Escalante Adventures

Libby and Alli canyoneering through narrow Zebra Canyon, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah, USA
“Let’s do something that’s ACTUALLY fun.” Libby Sauter, Yosemite bigwall climber extraordinaire, turns to me with a pleading look while we’re huffing and puffing and shivering in the Argentinian cold at 18,000ft. “I mean it. Let’s get this mountain over with, and then let’s go somewhere remote and adventurous - but the type of adventure that’s WARM and FUN.” We’re just barely halfway through a brutally difficult six-week speed record mission on 22,838ft Aconcagua, capturing content for adidas Outdoor, and we’re already brainstorming our next project.
Cathedral in the Desert is a partially submerged sidearm of Glen Canyon and one of Lake Powell's many spectacular natural treasures. As water levels in the lake recede, more of Cathedral in the desert becomes accessible to intrepid explorers. Utah, USA. Self portrait.
Three months and one high-altitude speed record later I am still huffing and puffing, but this time in a very different setting. Libby, myself and our friend Allison are standup paddle boarding on Lake Powell as part of a multi-sport adventure - the very adventure that was conceived during those long cold days on Aconcagua. This time we’re focused on advocacy rather than on the quest for standout athletic performance: we want to playfully explore Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument, to capture images and stories that can help advocate for the preservation of these tremendous landscapes.
Libby looking at map while sitting on stand-up paddleboard, Lake Powell, Utah, USA
Libby, Alli and I start out with long slow days of desert trail running and canyoneering before packing up to embark on a two night / three day SUP backpack. We each carry forty pounds of gear - paddleboards, overnight and emergency gear, and my full camera kit - cross-country along miles of remote and difficult slick rock terrain as we gradually descend into the hot maze of canyons that defines Lake Powell. Five hours after setting out from our vehicles we finally reach the lakeshore, tucked away deep in the sunless bend of a canyon.
Libby and Alli trail running down hill through desert in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah, USA
This is where we’ll inflate our paddle boards and take to the water. But this is also where Libby discovers that she only packed in the blade of her three-piece collapsible paddle and not the shaft, which throws a bit of a wrench into our plans to SUP dozens of miles in the next 48 hours. Hiking back to the cars to retrieve the missing shaft would be a ten hour round trip and is out of the question, but as the old adage goes in these types of adventures: “If you don’t have it you don’t need it.” We devise a way to jerry rig a workable paddle from our combined kit plus a tree branch or two.
Beautiful natural scenery of sandstone cliffs reflecting in Lake Powell, Utah, USA
The next two days are my personal crux: I am doubling as SUP guide - since neither Libby nor Alli have experience on a standup paddle board or on the lake, while I can draw from my lesson’s of an eight-day solo SUP expedition that I embarked on in these same parts the prior year - and as photographer while also balancing my camera gear on the front of my paddle board, camera and lenses precariously close to a potential watery death.
Libby climbing on sandstone cliff, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah, USA
It’s not an easy setup but this is my favorite way of shooting: as part of a self-motivated, intimate project that results in organic imagery. This particular mission in Grand Staircase is just that - a passion project that combines adventure and creative work in the best possible way. And at the end of our time on Lake Powell and in Grand Staircase, the three of us walk away with a treasure trove of images, memories, and an infinite amount of excitement to plan the next project.
Libby smiling while holding Moqui Marble, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah, USA
Close-up of desert primrose growing in desert, Grand†Staircase-Escalante†National Monument, Utah, USA
Sunny and Alli canyoneering through narrow Zebra Canyon, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah, USA
Majestic scenery with submerged bare trees against sandstone cliffs in Lake Powell, Utah, USA
See more of Sunny's images here!

Room to Relax – Q&A With Sebastian Wahlhuetter

The hammock action is an annual event during the International Highline Meeting at the Monte Piana in the Dolomites, Italy. In total 26 people came together to form a colorful and especially designed rainbow in 17 hammocks. The idea to sleep in a hammock on such an incredible place was born at the very first Highline meeting at the Monte Piana in the year 2012. The adventurous pioneers Armin Holzer, Alex D?emilia and Igor Scotland from Ticket to the Moon hammocks, were so impressed by this experience that they wanted to share it with their friends. In the following years this concept developed and on September 10th 2015 this unique project took place for the third time. A symbol of peace and a tribute to the past. This place was chosen not only for its natural beauty but for its historical importance. This area is an open air museum to honor the memory of the 18.000 young soldiers who died here during the First World War. Its 7 km of trenches are still visible. THE STUNT WAS PERFORMED AND DESIGNED BY A PROFESSIONAL TEAM OF ATHLETES AND RIGGERS. (?>The set up has a breaking strength of >150 kN = >15 000 kg for the main line and additionally a redundant back up. Maximum force was 32 kN = 3200 kg.
The hammock action is an annual event during the International Highline Meeting at the Monte Piana in the Dolomites, Italy. In 2015. 26 people came together to form a colorful rainbow in 17 specially designed hammocks.

In 2012, the first International Highline Meeting festival was held in Monte Piana, Italy, and attracted "thrillseekers," eager to showcase their slackline skills in a more extreme environment and feel a sense of community. Austria-based outdoor adventure photographer Sebastian Wahlhuetter teamed up with hammock manufacturer Ticket To The Moon to add a rather distinct twist to the event, and to help put on the event in various locations each year. We sat down with Sebastian to learn more about this ongoing unique event, his involvement with it and what makes someone climb into a hammock thousands of feet above land.

The hammock action is an annual event during the International Highline Meeting at the Monte Piana in the Dolomites, Italy at 2230m a.s.l. . The idea to sleep in a hammock on such an incredible place was born at the very first Highline meeting at the Monte Piana in the year 2012. The adventurous pioneers Armin Holzer, Alex D?emilia, and Igor Scotland of Ticket to the Moon hammocks, were so impressed by this experience that they wanted to share it with their friends. In 2014 in total 22 people gathered in 16 hammocks on this special occasion. This event is a symbol of peace and a tribute to the past. The place was chosen not only for its natural beauty but for its historical importance. This area is an open air museum to honor the memory of the 18.000 young soldiers who died here during the First World War. Its 7 km of trenches are still visible. THE STUNT WAS PERFORMED AND DESIGNED BY A PROFESSIONAL TEAM OF ATHLETES AND RIGGERS. (?>The set up had a pre-tension of 1.000 kg and reached a peak work load of 2.350 kg with all the people in the hammocks.)
This event is a symbol of peace and a tribute to the past. The place was chosen not only for its natural beauty but for its historical importance. This area is an open air museum to honor the memory of the 18.000 young soldiers who died here during the First World War. Its 7 km of trenches are still visible.

Aurora Photos: Unfortunately, it looks like this great event was canceled this year. How long have you been involved with Ticket To The Moon, and how long have you been involved in planning these events?

Sebastian: Yes, unfortunately the "Monte Piana Highline Meeting" was canceled this year and last; however, we still created hammock gatherings those 2 years. In 2016 it took place in Bosnia at the "Drill and Chill," and this year we moved back to Italy again but to a different place, a festival called Bismantova. So far there have been 5 big gatherings. I have been involved with Ticket to the Moon for around 6 years now and planning these events for around 4 years.

The hammock action is an annual event during the International Highline Meeting at the Monte Piana in the Dolomites, Italy. In total 26 people came together to form a colorful and especially designed rainbow in 17 hammocks. The idea to sleep in a hammock on such an incredible place was born at the very first Highline meeting at the Monte Piana in the year 2012. The adventurous pioneers Armin Holzer, Alex D?emilia and Igor Scotland from Ticket to the Moon hammocks, were so impressed by this experience that they wanted to share it with their friends. In the following years this concept developed and on September 10th 2015 this unique project took place for the third time. A symbol of peace and a tribute to the past. This place was chosen not only for its natural beauty but for its historical importance. This area is an open air museum to honor the memory of the 18.000 young soldiers who died here during the First World War. Its 7 km of trenches are still visible. THE STUNT WAS PERFORMED AND DESIGNED BY A PROFESSIONAL TEAM OF ATHLETES AND RIGGERS. (?>The set up has a breaking strength of >150 kN = >15 000 kg for the main line and additionally a redundant back up. Maximum force was 32 kN = 3200 kg.
The idea to sleep in a hammock on such an incredible place was born at the very first Highline meeting at the Monte Piana in the year 2012 The set up has a breaking strength of >150 kN = >15 000 kg for the main line and additionally a redundant back up. Maximum force was 32 kN = 3200 kg..

AU: How did you first get involved with the event and the hammock company? How do you choose the location for each year?

SW: The manager of TTTM Europe, Igor Scotland, is a good friend of mine and also a highline athlete. That's how we initially met - through a highline photo shoot many years ago. When I heard about this hammock project I was totally taken by the idea and together we developed the initial project further. There is no fixed plan for where and when the gatherings will happen, but since the organization takes a lot of time and energy, we usually combine it with festivals that highline athletes are attending anyway. This makes it easier, since these athletes usually know what they are doing on such a set up and how to deal with the exposure and still have fun. And fun is an important part of this whole thing!

A hammock rainbow over lake Cauma in the alps of Switzerland and took place during the annual waterline slackline tour. This special project was designed and realized by Ticket to the Moon Hammocks and involved a special slackline set up with a high breaking strength.
A hammock rainbow over lake Cauma in the alps of Switzerland and took place during the annual waterline slackline tour. This special project was designed and realized by Ticket to the Moon Hammocks and involved a special slackline set up with a high breaking strength.

AU: I imagine organizing something like this is a huge process. Are there any special permits you need for the hammocks? I believe there are a few places it’s illegal within the US to slackline; are there any places you’re unable to slack / high line in Europe?

SW: There are no special permits for the hammocks, outside the permits we're already getting for the high lines as part of the festival. Highlining itself is quite a gray area. It is mostly tolerated but there are also places where it is not so easy. Further, in Austria you need to clear every single highline a couple of days in advance with the aviation authority since there are a lot of rescue and supply helicopters around that need to know about such obstacles. It's pretty simple though and just an online form to be filled out. Other countries have other rules. One of the more problematic parts is building new anchors since you can not come everywhere and just bolt a couple of anchors to set up your line. There are also areas like Saxon Switzerland, where bolting or any use of cams, etc. is prohibited, so you can only set up highlines with natural anchors (usually loads of slings around a tower). So there are different regulations for different areas.

The hammock action is an annual event during the International Highline Meeting at the Monte Piana in the Dolomites, Italy. In total 26 people came together to form a colorful and especially designed rainbow in 17 hammocks. The idea to sleep in a hammock on such an incredible place was born at the very first Highline meeting at the Monte Piana in the year 2012. The adventurous pioneers Armin Holzer, Alex D?emilia and Igor Scotland from Ticket to the Moon hammocks, were so impressed by this experience that they wanted to share it with their friends. In the following years this concept developed and on September 10th 2015 this unique project took place for the third time. A symbol of peace and a tribute to the past. This place was chosen not only for its natural beauty but for its historical importance. This area is an open air museum to honor the memory of the 18.000 young soldiers who died here during the First World War. Its 7 km of trenches are still visible. THE STUNT WAS PERFORMED AND DESIGNED BY A PROFESSIONAL TEAM OF ATHLETES AND RIGGERS. (?>The set up has a breaking strength of >150 kN = >15 000 kg for the main line and additionally a redundant back up. Maximum force was 32 kN = 3200 kg.

AU: Last year, you said there were 17 hammocks with 19 people, and the majority are professional athletes who are all pretty comfortable in this situation. What’s the craziest thing you’ve seen someone doing at this event?

SW: Hmmm...craziest thing? Not sure about that. I don't think that there were lot of "crazy" things happening. Once one of the participants tried to surf the line while all the others were in the hammocks. That looked pretty sketchy. The coolest, most impressive thing I've gotten to witness was the live performed music at the rainbow gathering in Monte Piana 2015, where some people brought instruments and actually jammed incredibly well together!

Close up of climbing and high lining gear lying outdoors, Tijesno Canyon, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Close up of climbing and high lining gear lying outdoors, Tijesno Canyon, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina

AU: Most people think of high liners as daredevils. On the other side of things, it looks to me like they are calculated risk takers who prepare extremely well for an adventure. Can you tell me a bit about what kind of personality / makeup / skills a person needs to be successful at highline or slackline?

SW: Yes, I totally agree with the latter. Highlining is probably one of the safest sports I know. Since they have to take so much flak for being risk takers the whole sport is extremely well calculated, down to every last detail. I don't believe there have been any fatal incidents. So as long as we are not talking about free soloing or the hunt for the next world record (probably something like 2 miles), I am confident to say that this sport is solid safe. However, that does not mean that highlining is not totally mentally demanding. Sitting on a one inch webbing exposed hundreds of feet in the air and thinking/trying to stand up is psychologically still one of the most challenging and intense things I have done. Even though you know nothing can happen.

For example, the setup for the hammocks on the highline is a quite sophisticated rig with multiple redundancies to keep the whole action extremely safe. There is also live force measurement done with a force cell to always see how much workload is on the line. Bottom line: It's safe and all the people involved are secured and attached directly to the line. No one is "just" laying in a hammock.

About the personality – well I think this depends as in any sport on ones ambition. If you want to make a career as an athlete (not that there would be many who did), you have to train and practice and step up your mental game quite a bit with a solid strategy and training. In general, literally everyone can step on a slackline and learn to walk a decent amount of meters. However, before you try to step on a highline you have to be quite solid in your ground skills - otherwise you have no chance to even get up. In my career I met all kinds of athletes - those who treat it more as a hobby and enjoy the mere art of balancing. For those people distance and records are not important. But there are also those who are totally focused on getting better, higher, longer and who follow more the competitive approach just like in any sport.

The hammock action is an annual event during the International Highline Meeting at the Monte Piana in the Dolomites, Italy at 2230m a.s.l. . The idea to sleep in a hammock on such an incredible place was born at the very first Highline meeting at the Monte Piana in the year 2012. The adventurous pioneers Armin Holzer, Alex D?emilia, and Igor Scotland of Ticket to the Moon hammocks, were so impressed by this experience that they wanted to share it with their friends. In 2014 in total 22 people gathered in 16 hammocks on this special occasion. This event is a symbol of peace and a tribute to the past. The place was chosen not only for its natural beauty but for its historical importance. This area is an open air museum to honor the memory of the 18.000 young soldiers who died here during the First World War. Its 7 km of trenches are still visible. THE STUNT WAS PERFORMED AND DESIGNED BY A PROFESSIONAL TEAM OF ATHLETES AND RIGGERS. (?>The set up had a pre-tension of 1.000 kg and reached a peak work load of 2.350 kg with all the people in the hammocks.)
The set up had a pre-tension of 1,000 kg and reached a peak work load of 2,350 kg with all the people in the hammocks.)

AU: All adventure sports require a unique mentality / different gear set ups to capture great photos. Do you have a favorite set-up?

SW: That depends on the project. I usually have to carry my gear some distance in an alpine environment or even climb with it so I always think twice what I take. Basically I work with a Canon setup of fixed (35, 50) and zoom (16-35, 24-70, 70-200) lenses and I usually bring some external lightning. Recently I started using two Elinchrome ELB400 setups with Spot-Reflectors since they are small but powerful and fit together with my other gear in one backpack (yes it took me awhile to find that position where everything fits in one bag!). I work with several Mindshift gear bags since they have a great line up with different bags for different needs (hanging on a rope, hiking long distances, etc...).

View of woman walking on high line above mountains, Tijesno Canyon, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina
View of woman walking on high line above mountains, Tijesno Canyon, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina

AU: Do you slack line or highline yourself? If so, how did you first get involved in it?

SW: I used to slackline pretty much in my past several years ago and did it long before most people here in Europe even knew what this is. It all started when a climbing colleague came around 15 years ago with a photo of someone walking the spire in Yosemite and so we did some research and built our own version of a slackline. I also walked some short highlines in my life, mostly so that I can say I've done it! But nowadays I almost don't slackline anymore since the photographic part consumes most of my resources when on such projects. Also, my personal focus shifted more towards climbing over the years. 

Side view of people lying in hammocks above mountains, Tijesno Canyon, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Side view of people lying in hammocks above mountains, Tijesno Canyon, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina

AU: Have YOU ever gotten in one of the hammocks?

SW: Yes - if you managed to get on the highline in the first place than being in a hammock is not the problem 😉 Probably the most difficult part is to get into it but once you have managed that you just enjoy the view.

Sebastian Wahlhuetter is a professional editorial and commercial photographer based in Austria who has been featured on National Geographic's site, Red Bull Adventure and Illume, and in magazines like Rock & Ice, Men's Health and Outdoor-magazine. His personal focus is on the outdoors, and environmental themes ranging from alpine photography to urban adventures. See more of Sebastian's adventure photography, including highline, urban slackline, and free running here!

Fall Faves

Autumn is one of our favorite times of year, for many reasons (NOT the proliferation of pumpkin-spice-everything): Apple picking, hot cider, root vegetable harvests, crisp air, explosions of color, World Series / NBA opening night, holidays that bring us together, pumpkin carving, and let's not forget, mocking pumpkin spice products. Our photographers shared their own list of favorite places and activities in autumn, and what makes their spot the best spot in the fall months. The Eastern Sierras near Mammoth and June Lakes is a outdoor playground that offers incredible fishing, hiking, paddle boarding and scenic wonders.
Upper Owens River near Mammoth Lakes, CA
The water flows quietly, meandering around wide, sweeping turns where Browns and Rainbows are sometimes coaxed from small pockets of deeper water. Fishing the Upper Owens River near Mammoth Lakes, California, is like spending time with your best friend. It’s a place of solitude and comfort where no one needs to talk to understand the magic of being together. Set amid beautiful views of the Eastern Sierra range where faint glimmers of the idle lifts on Mammoth Mountain can be seen for miles, it’s where I’ve returned time again to create memories with my wife and son. As the summer crowds thin-out and the winter crowds still a few months away, fall is the best time to visit “The Owens,” as my family affectionally refers to the river. Tall grass, long shadows and silence, minus perhaps the moo of an errant cow grazing nearby, is what draws us to The Owens each fall. My son (pictured) learned to fish here as a youngster and loves every chance to return. He says it’s for the fishing but, of course, I always said the same thing. The truth is, no one in my family cares if we feel the tug of a trout as we wander along the river in a cool breeze. It’s about the warm feeling you get when you return to that special place every year.  - Todd Bigelow A backpacker lies flat on the ground in Illal Meadows.
Illal Meadows, BC

The hike in to Illal Meadows, in southwest British Columbia is well worth the reward for effort. There are numerous tarns and mountain views in all directions with plenty of great options for lakeside camping. I try my best to make it up to the meadows at least once a year, ideally in autumn.  I love wandering through the colorful alpine meadows, feeling the crisp cold air, watching the golden sunsets and eating the plethora of late season blueberries that can be found here! The three peaks of varying difficulty accessible from the meadows (Illal Peak, Jim Kelly Peak (pictured) and Coquihalla Mountain), combined with the stunning landscape and scenery, make this area a great weekend destination for hiking, climbing, and camping. - Chris Kimmel

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Humphrey's Ledge, North Conway, NH

North Conway is an absolute zoo between mid September and mid October. Europeans, Asians, mid-westerners and anyone else within a days drive descend on out neck of the woods. They also loose all common sense and driving etiquette. I've seen a bus load of people standing in the middle of the highway taking selfies with the fall foliage on the side of the road. So this time of year requires locals to run for the hills, cliffs or remote spots to stay safe. Even a five minute walk off of the road cuts the crowds dramatically. One of my favorite local retreats is Humphrey's Ledge a short drive from town, it's got some bouldering under a canopy of maples that turn bright orange this time of year. A bit further up the hill is the cliff proper and it's a bit scruffy but it faces south and stays warm on those chilly fall days. After one pitch up our little valley stretches out, blanketed in a crazy mix of colors only New England can produce.  - Joe Klementovich

A Cape Cod cranberry grower and his crew "rack up" cranberries with booms after flooding a bog in Brewster, MA.

Cranberry bogs, Cape Cod, MA

Every fall, the cranberry bogs in my small town on Cape Cod are transformed from dull fields into exquisite bogs of floating red berries. To harvest the berries, cranberry growers like Ray Thacher, whose crew is working in this photo, flood the bogs with water and the berries float to the top. They can then be "racked" together and then vacuumed up into a waiting truck. Ray's family has been growing cranberries for over 60 years on Cape Cod and I love the visual transformation their work brings about. Visitors as well as local residents often stop beside bogs this time of year and watch the cranberry growers at work. And while most of us associate cranberries with Thanksgiving, there are so many things other delicious things to make with cranberries besides a sauce for turkey like cranberry scones, cranberry pancakes, cranberry butter, cranberry granola, cranberry smoothies, cranberry-glazed ham and even cranberry margaritas! - Julia Cumes   

The sun glows on the top of the peaks of Little Cottonwood Canyon as it sets above the Utah mountains on a clear fall day.

Mount Superior, Little Cottonwood Canyon, UT

Mount Superior in Little Cottonwood Canyon, Utah, is a hike I had always wanted to do but never seemed to find the time. On my last day living in Utah a friend and I finally made it out to do the South Ridge of Mount Superior. This is more of a scramble then a hike. Lots of exposure and expansive views are encountered along the way as you gain over 2600 feet to the peak at 11,040 feet. The route we took on the way down (The Cardiff Pass Trail) was much more mellow. The elevation gain was still intense over a short distance, but much less exposure and risk of falling, but still an amazing viewpoint of the Wasatch Mountains, especially as the setting sun casts its yellow glow on the nearby peaks. Fall is the perfect time to do this hike. The summer heat is gone, with the cool crisp nip of fall in the air. The Aspen trees in the canyon have started to change. Vibrant yellows shine all over the mountainsides and even little bit of snow has started to cover the north faces up high. A quick jaunt up from Salt Lake, hiking Mount Superior is a perfect afternoon activity if you find yourself in town for a weekend, or for an entire season. If you are searching for a solid work out and amazing views of Little Cottonwood Canyon, a hike up iconic Mount Superior is a great way to get both. - Ben Girardi

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Door County, WI

One of my favorite roads in our entire state of Wisconsin is at the very tip of Door County, a favorite vacation spot for many folks (quite possibly due to the numerous apple and cherry orchards). Often simply referred to as "the winding road in Door County," this unique must-see landmark should be attributed to Jens Jensen, the famed Danish-born landscape architect that influenced this amazing spot. Jensen founded The Clearing, a Door County school for landscape architects. I always wanted to go in the fall and got lucky when a trio of corvette’s came through. The curvy road looks like it goes on forever but it actually stops where you can board a ferry to Washington Island. To get this shot I compressed the curves using a long lens and had to stand in the middle of the road. My wife had my back! - Jeffrey Phelps

Lake George New York in Fall from the Pinnacle
Lake George, NY

Much may have changed since Thomas Jefferson described it as “… the most beautiful water I ever saw”, but Lake George in New York’s Adirondack Mountains remains among the most beautiful lakes in the U.S., even more so when fall foliage blankets the shores with the jewell tones of autumn.  While there is no shortage of beautiful hiking around Lake George, one of my favorites for a quick outing is the roughly 1 mile trail to the Pinnacle on the Lake’s western shore. Short enough for an after work hike and family friendly, the trail offers a big payoff with a breathtaking panorama of the Lake. It is also the perfect spot to watch the sun rise with a thermos of coffee for a great start to the day. - Zaneta Hough, The Open Road Images

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Anywhere on my Bike

Autumn, with its vivid colors, sights and smells, is my favorite time of year to ride my bike.  Every time I pedal out of the driveway I instantly revert to my mischievous 8 year-old self - skidding through every leaf pile, speeding through the tunnels of luminosity with a racing heart and a broad grin on my face. - Bob Allen

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Crystal Mill, Elk Mountains, CO

One day its hot and your paddling down the river, the next your trudging your way up a mountain through snow. Somewhere between those days is Autumn and we're gifted with perfect cool weather for hiking and the most amazing display of color among the aspen trees. Grab a friend and venture deep into the Elk Mountains of Colorado to the Crystal Mill. - Brandon Huttenlocher

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Boston Hill Farm, Andover, MA

The only thing that has changed at Boston Hill Farm in Andover, Massachusetts, is us. We have been going to pick up our pumpkins there every fall for the past eight years. The hay rides are just as bumpy, the cider donuts just as yummy, the foliage just as vibrant. But now my boys pull each other in the radio flyer wagons, carry their own pumpkins and…..sigh…..no longer let me pick out their clothes. I plan to take them back again this year- and despite some preteen eye-rolling- I know they will still have fun searching the fall fields for the perfect jack-o-lantern. Even if they aren’t wearing absolutely adorable overalls. - Laurie Swope

Eastern Sierra Fall Color
Eastern Sierra, CA

Here in the Eastern Sierra, October ushers in crisp temps and the explosion of Fall colors. Trout are hungry and although every drainage in the region is active with fisherman, the fishing pressure of summer is significantly reduced. Mountains are alive with preparations for winter as wildlife is on the move. Migratory birds are passing through overhead, mule deer return from their summer hangouts and the local black bear population is preparing for hibernation. Cooler temps are perfect for hiking and the backcountry is almost deserted. Day hikes and longer backpack trips are solitary adventures in this quiet season. Fall is the BEST season on the Eastside. - Rick Saez

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King Range National Conservation Area, CA

I was thrilled to be able to share this autumn, a special time of year for me, with friends on Lost Coast Trail in Northern California. Located in the rugged and remote King Range National Conservation Area, with no major roads nearby, the area is secluded and mostly untouched by man. Along the hike, the golden grasses of costal prairies sway in the ocean breeze and glow during the vibrant Pacific sunsets. Often you will see and hear sea lions basking in the afternoon sun. The intertidal zones of this trail are also unique. For several miles, the trail is only accessible during low tide. Autumn has less visitors on the 24 miles of desolate shoreline and provides a fantastic solitary getaway, setting this trail apart from the rest. - Michael Okimoto

Bill Swift, owner of Swift Canoe & Kayak, paddles canoe in early morning on Oxtongue Lake near Algonquin Park, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Henry Georgi/Aurora)
Oxtongue Lake, ON

Autumn is a great time for two of my favorite activities - mountain biking and canoeing! Canoeing in autumn is truly magical for many reasons; no mosquitoes for one! Also because of the cooler temperatures you almost always have some degree of mist in the early mornings. It lends an ethereal, timeless sense to an early morning paddle on a calm, flat lake. When you’re in this “zone" paddling becomes effortless. In this photo my friend Bill is paddling on Oxtongue Lake, just outside Algonquin Park in Ontario, Canada, a prime canoeing destination. This image is one of my all-time favorites; in fact, a friend recently created an abstract painting from this photo that we now have hanging on our wall. - Henry Georgi

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Greenland

Autumn in Greenland is one of the most magical places in the world.  The Arctic tundra starts turning brilliant shades of yellow, orange, and red in late August into mid-September, and provides stark contrast to the rocky, rugged, and sometimes icy surrounding landscapes.   This particular location along the shoreline of Disko Island off the coast of Greenland across Disko Bay from Ilulissat is one of the most magical places I've come across in my travels.  It took some hiking from the tiny community of Qeqertarsuaq to find, but once we crossed over the crest of a hill about 3 or 4 miles out, this scene unfolded before our eyes and took our breaths away.   Autumn colours, waterfalls, crazy basalt columns...and icebergs.  It truly had it all.  We called it, and still call it (I've been back, twice):  Arctic Eden. - Dave Brosha

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Hamilton Falls, Jamaica, VT

This photo is actually a reflection turned upside down. It's of Hamilton Falls, a 150 foot waterfall in Jamaica, VT. I try to make an annual trip up to Vermont every Columbus Day weekend because foliage is usually at it's peak in the area. There are endless hidden streams, trails, and scenic barns down winding dirt roads in Vermont. If you look hard enough you can find new gems just off the road or deep down a trail. What makes this area even more special are the lack of crowds. Vermont draws "leaf peepers" from around the world, but you won't get frustrated by tons of tourists. There's always a sense of serenity. - Matt Andrew

A man fly fishing on the North Fork of the Payette River in Idaho on a Fall morning.
Payette River, ID
This spot on the North Fork of the Payette is chock-full of people all summer long.  Once autumn is here, they just disappear, and by midweek everywhere in town becomes my own private Idaho! I especially love this stretch of the river because of all the twists and turns, the massive trees and the hidden but easy access. - Melissa Shelby View Of Sports Authority Field At Mile High Stadium In Denver, Colorado
Mile High Stadium, CO
For my family, Fall will always be about October baseball, my husband's birthday and Denver Broncos football.  Attending a game on a crisp autumn Sunday, the stadium buzzes with energy and the fans joyously cheer with a contagious and inspired enthusiasm.  The friendly confines of Mile High have been a place of comfort for four decades for my family, so each Sunday standing in a warm shimmering sun with a cool Rocky breeze surrounding the wave of Orange feels like home. Fall and subsequently football brings family and friends together. - Leslie Parrott